Prices for finished cattle are holding steady, despite some processors trying to gain a tighter grip on the trade.

Several plants have moved to cut base quotes by as much as 10p/kg to 368p/kg, citing a slowdown in sales and an increase in cattle supplies as the reasons for the price correction.

Despite the attempts to talk the trade down, farmers selling stock indicate that factory agents are still showing plenty of appetite for cattle.

As such, several plants have left base quotes unchanged at 378p/kg for U-3 animals.

More regular sellers with bigger supplies indicate that 400p/kg is still being offered for in-spec stock

There are multiple reports that 394p to 396p/kg remains widely available for prime steers and heifers, with bulls moving off farm around 390p/kg for in-spec animals.

More regular sellers with bigger supplies indicate that 400p/kg is still being offered for in-spec stock towards the upper end of the market, although it appears to be less readily available compared with recent weeks.

In Britain, the beef trade is holding firm

Where farmers are struggling to negotiate on price, the live ring continues to provide a strong alternative outlet for U and R grading animals.

Prices of 220p to 240p/kg remain on offer for stock at the outlined conformation, which converts to a beef price equivalent of 390p to 428p/kg at 56% kill-out.

In Britain, the beef trade is holding firm, with R4L grading animals on 416p/kg across steers and heifers.

In Northern Ireland, the average price paid across all grades of steers and heifers eased by 0.48p to 382.61p/kg last week.

For U3 grading animals, steers rose by 1.1p/kg in value to average 393.3p/kg, while heifers slipped by 0.7p to 393.7p/kg, with bulls down 2.9p to 383p/kg.


Demand for cull cows is holding steady, with the best quotes available for R3 grading animals on 290p/kg, with O+3 animals on 280p/kg.

However, quotes fall well short of deals on offer, with R grading cows on 310p to 320p/kg, with prices averaging 314.6p/kg last week.

NI sheep trade: tighter supplies boost lamb price

Supplies of spring lamb have tightened, boosting mart prices by 20p to 30p/kg half-weight. To keep pace, factory quotes increased by 20p/kg to 640p/kg payable to the 21kg deadweight limit.

In Kilrea, lambs made 610p to 649p/kg, unchanged on last week. In Massereene, lambs sold from 610p to 652p, up 30p to 42p/kg.

In Saintfield, lambs made 600p to 645p/kg, up by 30p/kg on last week. Lambs at 30kg made £150 and £155; 25kg made £147; 23kg at £141, up £6 on last week. Lambs at 20kg and 21kg made £130.

In Rathfriland, a show of 425 spring lambs made 620p to 680p/kg, with the sale average of 648p/kg, up 20p/kg on last week.

Top weights of 24kg made £145 to £148, while 21kg made £135 to £142.


The trade for fat ewes is still strong and well-fleshed lots are making good prices.

Kilrea sold to a top of £151 and Massereene to £150.

In Saintfield, the top prices were £175 and £169, with a big run from £124 to £156.

In Rathfriland, top price was £186, with a run from £142 to £160.

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